Why Project Managers Should Become Better Visual Storytellers
Author: Adi Muslic, PMP
Because images win over text - this is how Petra Sammers, Communications Strategist and Creative Director, started her story of Visual Storytelling.
This was immediately confirmed through an online survey where the event participants confirmed that images are very important when communicating to your stakeholders and team members. There is also a global trend to use more and more images. Between 2006 and 2016 use of visual content grew from 20% to 70% in all communications media.
To learn more about the theme, Petre recommended the "Thinking fast and slow" book, written by Daniel Kahneman, a winner of the Nobel prize in economics.
Every image delivers more information than text. Images are much faster to deliver compared to text. The text needs translation - an image is multilingual. Do you need more convincing?
The brain prioritizes visual stimulus over all other types of content. Visual content can be in different forms: Graphics, Photos, Movies, Animations, Infographics.
The next survey question was "For what purpose do you use pictures?"
The answer was "For visualization of the topic we are talking about".
Petra added other purposes that we should have in mind such as decorate, catch attention, entertain, inspire, motivate.
She also added that we should learn the visual language. We just need to learn 3, 4, and 5.
3 information sources:
How the eye works - it transmits information to the brain. The main sources of information are Shape, Colour, Perspective. By changing these sources you can change what is communicated.
4 criteria for successful visual communication:
Authenticity - instead of idealized better use real-life images.
Sensual Stimulation - instead of boring and smooth, better striking and sensual, comparing and making-you-smile images.
Cultural Relevancy - use real situation images.
Storytelling - Make your public curious about the story behind the image or use the image to quote a well-known story.
5 components of storytelling (see the image):
My story stops here. Beyond this point, you need to see the event recording on the PMI Switzerland's YouTube channel. I am unable to tell you a story about visual content that Petra prepared to demonstrate how images support storytelling. Here is just one example.